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Improve customer engagement with personalised feedback

4 ways customer service organisations can improve the customer experience

Matt Lloren | October 28, 2015

I love giving feedback on my favourite brands and services!

In fact, some of the brands that I have the strongest connection with have encouraged and enabled me to give feedback in ways that enhance my experience with their brand. And it’s not just me: Research over the past few years also supports the notion that how a company manages the feedback experience impacts engagement and advocacy.

Brands, take note.

My recent memorable feedback experience

I am a fan (and subscriber) of a new news streaming service that allows the user to customise how long their news show should be. If I’m short on time, I can choose a 5-minute show to stream. For my commute, I can auto-download a 20-minute show.

After I subscribed, I realised that ads played at the beginning of each show, so I cancelled the service because I don’t generally like paying for ads. They emailed me to confirm the cancellation and asked me for my reason. I explained. They then explained the reason for including ad support.

A few months later, I received an email about their new iPad app, which attracted me to the service again. It changed the entire experience—making the ads a non-issue. I emailed them back, raving about their improvement, and they asked me to join a focus group in San Francisco. Sadly, I had to decline, but I continue to use their service and provide ongoing feedback on enhancements.

I now use the service almost daily.

Proactively engage in a personal way. Create a conversation. Use product improvements to get ex-customers to re-engage. Make it easy to give feedback.

Takeaways for customer service organisations

Four themes emerged from this experience that customer service organisations should consider in their interactions with each and every customer:

  1. Proactively engage in a personal way. When I cancelled my subscription, I emailed the service directly through the app. I was then contacted directly via personal email from their head of marketing—a real person, with real authority, contacted me on a channel I was expecting them to use to have a conversation. Which leads me to the next theme …

  2. Create a conversation. The head of marketing asked me why—a great technique to really find out what I was thinking. The question allowed me to explain in my own words how I felt and the reasons why I cancelled. It made me feel truly listened to. It also allowed them to respond with their view. I said something; she said something; I responded; she responded and also invited me to have a longer conversation at a focus group.

  3. Use product improvements to get ex-customers to re-engage. I was pleasantly surprised when I heard about the iPad app. They didn’t just cut their losses: They tried to re-engage (and re-acquire) with me. I found the user experience so compelling that I re-subscribed. Moreover, I have been regularly contributing enhancement requests over the past six months, some of which have been added in subsequent updates.

  4. Make it easy to give feedback. The service allows me to email them. It’s that simple. They didn’t make me go to some support site, register and then make me post on a community. It could only be easier if they allowed me to send feedback via SMS.


Now, I may be one of those exceptional customers that actually loves to give feedback for the sake of it, but the response from this service gives me hope that more of my favourite brands will start to engage with me (and others) in similar ways.

Have a favourite feedback experience to share? Tell me on LinkedIn!

Slalom Consulting Matt Lloren

Matt Lloren is a customer engagement consultant in Slalom’s London office. He is passionate about helping organisations and customers build relationships that create value over time.


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